Thursday, May 4, 2023

The Church of St. Andrew and St. Mary, Grantchester

Making our way now to the parish church in Grantchester, the Church of St. Andrew and St. Mary, we find some heraldry on our way into the churchyard.

These arms are, of course, those of the Anglican Diocese of Ely: Gules three ducal coronets or.

The earliest recorded use of this coat of arms is by Bishop William de Luda in 1290. They are those assigned to St. Etheldreda, Queen of Northumbria and founder of the Abbey of Ely, in whose honor the Cathedral is dedicated. (Ely Cathedral, whose heraldry we will be looking at in the near future, has a similar but different coat of arms from the Diocese, consisting of a red field with three golden keys.)

For those of you who might be interested in how the Church of St. Andrew and St. Mary is laid out, someone has spent a lot of time carefully creating a model of the church to show us, with the chancel to the left and the bell tower to the right, and even lifting up the roof of the nave to show us much of the interior:

We love visiting English parish churches when we have the opportunity, and not just because they almost always have some heraldry in them. Visiting this one was just a little more special because the TV series Grantchester regularly films scenes inside its hallowed walls. And being able to stand and sit in the exact spots where characters from the series have stood or sat was a plus!

And, of course, it has heraldry, too!

More next time.

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